Category Archives: Uncategorized

SLSA: Creativity

30th Annual  Meeting

Call  for  Proposals

Creativity

November  3-­‐6,  2016
Westin  Peachtree Plaza Hotel
Atlanta,  Georgia
“The  Society  for  Literature,  Science, and  the  Arts (SLSA) invites  session,  panel,  and stream  proposals  and  artistic  works  for  our  thirtieth-­annual  conference.  The  theme  of  this  meeting  is “Creativity.” SLSA  invites papers or panels that consider how new technologies; new understandings of  the  human,  the  nonhuman,  and  the  post-­human; and  emerging theories in  science and aesthetics affect  understandings of creativity.”
250-­word  abstracts  for  papers/proposals due by  May  15,  2016.
Read more here.

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Buen Vivir, Degrowth and Ecological Swaraj: Alternatives to ble development and the Green Economy

by Ashish Kothari, Federico Demaria and Alberto Acosta

Introduction

Concern over the ecological unsustainability of human presence on Earth, and the growing inequality coupled with continuing deprivation of a huge part of humanity, has grown rapidly in the last couple of decades (Rockstrom et al., 2009; Piketty, 2014; Steffen et al., 2015). Inequality, injustice and unsustainability, already part of many state-dominated systems, have clearly been worsened by the recent phase of capitalism’s accelerated expansion (Harvey, 2014).

Along with this, however, the global exploration of pathways towards sustainability, equity and justice has also grown. These are of two broad kinds. First, and currently on the ascendance, are ‘Green Economy’ (GE) and ‘sustainable development’ (SD) approaches. These entail a series of technological, managerial, and behavioural changes, in particular to build in principles and parameters of sustainability and inclusion into production, consumption and trade while maintaining high rates of economic growth as the key driver of development. These attempts have failed (and we argue, will continue to fail) to deliver what they promised: halt the worsening of the planetary health, eradicate poverty and reduce inequality. Somewhat on the fringes, as the second broad trend, are paradigms that call for more fundamental changes, challenging the predominance of growth-oriented development and of the neo-liberal economy and related forms of ‘representative democracy’. This essay attempts to provide a critique of the ‘Green Economy’ model, and describe the alternative notions or worldviews of well-being emerging (or re-emerging) in various regions. By comparing the two, it suggests how the latter can contribute to re-politicize the public debate by identifying and naming different socio-environmental futures: Buen Vivir, Ecological Swaraj or Radical Ecological Democracy (RED), and Degrowth. Finally, it discusses the risk of mainstream co-option of radical alternatives, and concludes on the need to strive for genuine political and socio-ecological transformation.

Continue Reading here.

Published in Development (2014) 57(3–4), 362–375. doi:10.1057/dev.2015.24

 

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What is Accelerationism?

By Charlie Ambler, reposted from VICE

Is Consuming Like Crazy the Best Way to End Capitalism?

Hang out on Tumblr or in a dorm lounge long enough and eventually the talk will turn to ending capitalism. These discussions are all theoretical, of course—there have been endless attempts at shifting from our market-based economy to something more egalitarian and enlightened, but nothing has stuck and some of the larger scale efforts have turned into horrific disasters. Anti-capitalists of various stripes haven’t stopped coming up with theories about how this system could finally fall, however. One of these theories is called accelerationism—the idea is that hyper-stimulation of the market on a mass scale will end with the collapse of capitalism. Consume like crazy, only drink from styrofoam, and throw handfuls of dead batteries into our oceans so the impending apocalypse can hurry up and get over with.

The spread of this idea is rooted in Marx’s belief that capitalism can’t sustain itself forever and will eventually fizzle out. The means by which people will bring about its end are unclear, but that’s where the ideas about accelerationism come from. Accelerationism is essentially the belief that the best way to shorten capitalism’s lifespan is to push it to the extreme. If normal capitalism is Mick Jagger, accelerationism is Jim Morrison.

A while back, Steven Shaviro, who teaches at Detroit’s Wayne State and studies the impact of technological capitalism on culture and everyday life, wrote an essay about accelerationism, explaining what it is in language that wasn’t clouded by the usual academic jargon. Accelerationism has been explored by philosophers like Nick Land and Reza Negarestani, but Shaviro has become known as an authority on the topic—probably because he can articulate these complex philosophical ideas in a simple way that us plebs can understand. Shaviro just finished up a book out on accelerationism called No Speed Limit, so I called him up to learn more about the theory and see if my Amazon Prime addiction is actually helping society

Continue reading here.

 

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Climate Change, Ethics, & Water

E-mail notice received from Center for Humans & Nature.

Join the Center for Humans and Nature, Ecomyths, and the
Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum as we bring science, policy,
and ethics to a timely panel discussion reflecting on the
Paris Climate Conference (COP21).

Stream or listen live to this conversation on Chicago Public Radio’s Worldview Thursday, December 10, at 12:00 noon CST on WBEZ 91.5 FM.

with Kathleen Dean Moore, Curt Meine,
Joel Brammeier, Adele Simmons, and
moderated by Worldview’s Jerome McDonnell

 

 

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Graham Harman: An Ontology of Forces and Actions

By S. C. Hickman at dark ecologies. A close, productive reading of Harman here I think. CS

dark ecologies

quantum-jpg

Instead of exiling objects to the natural sciences (with the usual mixed emotions of condescension and fear), philosophy must reawaken its lost talent for unleashing the enfolded forces trapped in the things themselves. It is my belief that this will have to be the central concern of twenty-first-century philosophy.1

Philosophy as an engineering project or reclamation? Forces that must be awakened, brought to bare on the issues of our age, a revolution in those withdrawn and sleeping entities that seem to be forever waiting for something to happen. Is this the Philosopher as Hermes awakening the sleepers, or a software developer calling the hidden algorithms of some program awaiting its secret instructions. As I was revisiting Graham Harman’s early Tool-Being: Heidegger and the Metaphysics of Objects it struck me again that his work is not so much about objects as it is about those invisible forces locked away from direct…

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Bringing Interdisciplinary Sources to the Table: Urban College Writers Meet Leopold’s A Sand County Almanac

By Susan Jacobs, DePaul University

As a writing instructor at DePaul University, I find Leopold’s A Sand County Almanac an excellent tool for interdisciplinary learning. Most of our students live and study in Chicago’s gritty/glittering urban setting. We have access to innovative conservation efforts within multiple disciplines. In the midst of Daniel Burnham’s 19th century concrete grid, we have urban farms, environmentally-oriented social media, and multiple green architectural and commercial efforts.

Jacobs1909_Grid

Chicago City Grid

Some scholars would argue that interdisciplinary studies creates thinkers with broad awareness but shallow comprehension. I would argue that interdisciplinarity creates adaptable, innovative members of thinking communities.

I’ve taught the Almanac several times, and I’ve learned that finding primary resources in our urban setting demonstrates that everything is connected. As students learn about their urban biotic community, they open up to Leopold’s key ideas. I take shameless advantage of new sources that pop up—cultural exhibits, social media, organic food trucks, no-waste restaurants, and vertical gardens. Pairing urban resources with Leopold helps me keep up with students’ quickly shifting interests.

JacobsFlorioleRooftop-Herb-Garden.2015

A rooftop herb garden supplies a local bakery.

A typical freshman writing class will have a mix of majors including English, Computer Science, Digital Media, History, Biology, and Commerce. Engaging varied interests requires finding course material that inspires individual thinking within the context of academic discourse.

Continue reading at Building a Land Ethic: A blog for out Thinking Community  here.

 

 

 

 

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New Contact Info

Hi all,

We’d love to hear from you.  Please contact us at environmentalcritique@gmail.com.

Your friendly co-editors, Randall Honold and Christine Skolnik.

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Image source: https://twitter.com/leaninorg/status/354618955354234881

 

 

 

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